Police say Philadelphia attacker is DAESH sympathiser

Philadelphia police say attacker who seriously wounded police officer with 13 gunshots admits DAESH allegiance

Photo by: AFP
Photo by: AFP

Philadelphia Police Commissioner Richard Ross addresses the media at a press conference regarding the shooting of Police officer Jesse Hartnett by Edward Archer, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, January 8, 2016

Updated Jan 10, 2016

Philadelphia Police Department said on Friday that a gunman who attacked and seriously wounded a police officer the previous day has pledged allegiance to DAESH.

The gunman Edward Archer, 30, fired from point-blank range at police officer Jesse Hartnett, 33, while he was sitting in his patrol car.

He pledged allegiance to the DAESH terrorist group when he was questioned after his arrest, the police said.

"He has confessed to committing this cowardly act in the name of Islam," Philadelphia Police Commissioner Richard Ross said in a press conference.

"He doesn't appear to be a stupid individual, just an extremely violent one."

Jim Kenney, in his first week as mayor of the city, called Archer's actions "abhorrent" and "terrible" and said they have nothing to do with the teachings of Islam.

"This is a criminal with a stolen gun who tried to kill one of our officers," he said.

"It has nothing to do with being a Muslim or following the Islamic faith."

Philadelphia police Captain James Clark said that "He pledges his allegiance to Islamic State [DAESH]."

A still image from surveillance video shows a gunman approaching a Philadelphia Police vehicle in which Officer Jesse Hartnett was shot shortly before midnight January 7, 2016

Archer fired at least 13 shots as he approached the police car and reached the driver’s side window.

Hartnett, who was hit three times in the arm and will require several surgeries, got out of the car and wounded the attacker.

Ross told reporters that Hartnett’s injuries “are very, very serious."

The attacker used a weapon that was stolen from police in 2013.

"We know it was stolen, how many hands it may have passed through in the last couple of years, we do not know," Ross said.

The police officer's father, Robert Hartnett, said that his son was in good spirits.

"He's a tough guy," he said.

A combination of headshots of the police officer Jesse Hartnett (L), 33, and Edward Archer (R), 30

TRTWorld and agencies